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An Inconvenient Truth About Food  

post #1 of 62
Thread Starter 
Or: What I Took Away From Al Gore’s Slideshow

As a movie freak and a political junkie, it was inevitable that I would have to see Davis Guggenheims’ latest documentary, An Inconvenient Truth. Now like most people if you had asked me if I wanted to go see a documentary about Al Gore giving a PowerPoint presentation – a man reputed to be so dull his secret service codename was “Al Gore” - I might have said (yawn) no thanks, I need to go have a root canal done at an Amway convention. Fortunately I saw the trailer first, and so was intrigued.

The folks at Sundance and Cannes were intrigued too, where they treated Gore like a rock star and gave the film high honors. But the fact that Guggenheim took what sounds at first blush to be the height of boredom and transformed it into a nail-biter is not why you should see it. It’s not the medium, it’s the message.

By now most people know what the inconvenient truth of the title is. If you haven’t heard, one option you have is to wait a few years and you’ll know. Simply put, it’s this: global warming is real, it’s dangerous, and it’s our fault. There is no debate (or, what there was is over). Ask some scientists – the reputable ones who publish in peer-reviewed journals, not the ones whose paychecks come from petroleum companies – they ALL agree. And most of them can demonstrate that we will reach a tipping point, a point of no return, in just 10 years. In 50 years, well within my children’s lifetimes, the planet will very likely be completely uninhabitable.

But this is not a movie-to-slit-your-wrists-by kind of a message. Though portending horrible and tragic possibilities, the message is one of hope. There is something we can do, and since everything I know revolves around food, I have but the one way to look at it. So here are some food-related things you can do, in that wonderful “be the change you wish to see in the world” kind of way, to stem the tide (quite literally).

•Plant a garden. It doesn’t have to be big; in fact it can start as a window box. But plant it with food you will eat.
•Buy locally. Get your food from someplace nearby. Remember that the average food item in this country travels 1400 miles before it gets to your grocery store shelf. That’s a lot of gas and diesel being burned, which means a lot of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. See the movie if you don’t know why that’s bad.
•Keep you fridge clean. It costs more and uses more energy to run a dirty fridge, so clean the coils and the shelves. Also, store food toward the bottom when you can’t keep it full.
•Careful with the dishwasher. Use the economy cycle and prop it open to air dry rather than using the heated drying system. You’ll save money too.
•Ride your bike to the farmers’ market. And everywhere else too, if you can.
•Don’t eat fast food. It is designed to be eaten in the car, and Michael Pollan’s book The Omnivore’s Dilemma will explain to you (among many other things) how a meal at McDonald’s uses 3.5 gallons of oil. Think about that next time you read that there have been “billions and billions served.”

Perhaps the most important thing you can do right now is see the movie, and take as man people with you as you can. Tell them all to tell everyone else. Then come election season, ask your candidates whether they saw it and if not why not? What are their opinions of the issue and what are they planning to do about it?

Meanwhile, what are you planning to do about it?
Peace,
kmf



Visit Edible Iowa River Valley"In the long view, no nation is healthier that its children, or more prosperous than its farmers." -President Harry Truman, at the signing of the School Lunch Act, 1946
Join Slow Food HereJoin Gather.com here
Peace,
kmf



Visit Edible Iowa River Valley"In the long view, no nation is healthier that its children, or more prosperous than its farmers." -President Harry Truman, at the signing of the School Lunch Act, 1946
Join Slow Food HereJoin Gather.com here
post #2 of 62
Well on that recommendation I'll go see it.

as to your recommendations I'm with you.....except for:Ride your bike to the farmers’ market. And everywhere else too, if you can.

It's hard to stock up for the week at a farmer's market if you are riding a bike.....many of our customers take several loads to their cars. Can you imagine trying to get ripe peaches or heirloom tomatoes home on a bike?

Tonight is the first in a 6 part series of Farmer-Chef cooking classes.....I developed for Clayton Farmer's Market. The farmer will speak for 10 minutes about their farm connecting the guests/students with the farmer. Each class has a different high profile local chef that will feature the products from the farmer in a 2 hour demo cooking class.....I've lined up a Mo. winery to pour their wines. Viking Cooking School is hosting the classes in their 40 seat cooking ampitheatre.

Two weeks is local peach ice cream and sorbet give away at the market.....each year on my birthday I celebrate by giving away scoops of special Calhoun County Illinois Ice Cream & Sorbet.....it was rated best ice cream in the city last year!!!

Aug. 12 is Heirloom Tomato Fest....Nicko was a judge in the first contest years ago. It's still going strong and is a fun way to learn that not every tomato is the same.

*Decide what you want your community to be like and work to make that vision happen. It can be a world of fun!
cooking with all your senses.....
cooking with all your senses.....
post #3 of 62
I walk to the local farmer's market. I have coolers to keep the goods while I head home. If there's more than I can carry, there are always luggage carts and such. Bikes can have carts attached to the back. For extremely large loads, it may be inconvenient, but a bike can actually haul quite a bit.
post #4 of 62
Thread Starter 
Shroom,

I know what you mean, but for most people I'm with FreeRider here. I have to bring fairly big loads from the market to my restaurant, but then, we have a farmers' market every day here, so I don't need to haul quite as much as those who stock up for the week.

Walking with a wagon is a great thing too, and bringing kids along if you have them shows them the importance of buying locally AND gives you exttra carrying hands!
Peace,
kmf



Visit Edible Iowa River Valley"In the long view, no nation is healthier that its children, or more prosperous than its farmers." -President Harry Truman, at the signing of the School Lunch Act, 1946
Join Slow Food HereJoin Gather.com here
Peace,
kmf



Visit Edible Iowa River Valley"In the long view, no nation is healthier that its children, or more prosperous than its farmers." -President Harry Truman, at the signing of the School Lunch Act, 1946
Join Slow Food HereJoin Gather.com here
post #5 of 62
I haven't seen the movie yet but I know about it and its reputation. It is on my "to do" list near the top.

I am proud to say that I am a commute cyclist and have been for over 20 years. I don't have a yard but I planted herbs in window boxes at one time. I stopped when the house was painted a few years ago and the boxes were removed. I'm inspired to start again.

Thank you

Jock
post #6 of 62
Yeah yeah yeah..Mount Pinatuba (sic..in the Phillipines) spewed out more carbonated flourocarbines in the first 10 mins of blowing its top than evil old mankind has made in its history. Algore is a total tree hugging idiot and so is them who follows his irrational antics. He is whut is known in theology vernacular as a "pantheist" followers of that particular religion believe that the Creator actually resides inside the Creation. That is why he worships trees and babbling brooks etc. Praise the Lord for hanging chads.

bigwheel
post #7 of 62
Well I gotta disagree with you there Bigwheel. I don't know that smog was much of an issue until us humans began burning fossil fuels in such huge quantities. And Mt Pini-what's-it in the Phillipines or any other volcanic erruption before it didn't make holes in the ozone layer. That's all on us.

I'm not the least bit religeous and I don't know where the "creator" lives but I can tell you that it breaks my heart when I see trees by the thousand dead from acid rain in California's forests.

I say that anybody who doesn't see that is fiddling while Rome burns.

Jock
post #8 of 62
Yeah, thank god we got Dubya...:rolleyes: much better choice for the country and the world huh?;)
My latest musical venture!
http://myspace.com/nikandtheniceguys
 
Also
http://www.myspace.com/popshowband "I'm at the age when food has taken the place of sex in my life. In fact I've just had a mirror put over my kitchen table." Rodney Dangerfield RIP
My latest musical venture!
http://myspace.com/nikandtheniceguys
 
Also
http://www.myspace.com/popshowband "I'm at the age when food has taken the place of sex in my life. In fact I've just had a mirror put over my kitchen table." Rodney Dangerfield RIP
post #9 of 62
Sorry to have to correct you BW, but global warming is the result of a build-up of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, not cloroflourocarbons. They contribute to the thinning of the ozone layer which protects us from the sun's ultraviolet radiation. Both are severe environmental concerns, yet unrelated issues.
My Dad, now retired, has been a climatologist and meteorologist for the Air Force, NASA, and the Environmental Protection Agency (back when it had teeth, governmental and financial support, and leadership by informed scientists, not administration cronies.) He was concerned about the increase of global mean temperature since the 1960s and has tracked it ever since. There was a small dip in the 1970s-remember the oil embargo when everyone started buying fuel efficient cars and the speed limit was 55? This also coincided with a string of very cool winters in the US causing some hack science enthusiasts to predict a cooling of the the earth's temp. However, at that time, huge chunks of the antarctic ice began breaking off.

Yes, the earth has gone through seasons of heating up and cooling, but gradually over the course of the course of hundreds and thousands of years. The problem we see now has occurred over the course of the last 75-100 years-an increase of about 5-6 degrees F. Doesn't seem like much, but you must look at its affects globally. The Sahara has increased in area by 1/3 in the past 50 years. So have deserts in Asia and arid regions of N and S America.

It's a plain and simple fact that the increase of burning fossil fuels has a direct relationship to the increase in mean (average) global temperature. Not doing something to change our habits is myopic at best and more than ignorant at worst. Fossil fuels are a finite resource and it's stupid to not put tax dollars into researching and developing sustainable alternatives.

Call Al Gore whatever you want, but he's informed, reasoned and intelligent. I know plenty of extreme tree-hugging pantheists and he's not one of them. Besides, he can actually pronounce the word "nuclear" and knows the difference between global warming, ozone depletion and acid rain-just a few distinctions that are completely lost on "the Shrub."

www.foodandphoto.com

Liquored up and laquered down,
She's got the biggest hair in town!

www.foodandphoto.com

Liquored up and laquered down,
She's got the biggest hair in town!

post #10 of 62
Thread Starter 
I was gonna reply to "bigwheel," but foodnfoto said everything I was going to ('cept my dad was not a scientist).

The folks who are still arguing that it's a hoax (to what purpose, by the way?) are the ones who have no science, no facts behind their argument. They site articles in the press, on blogs and in oil company propaganda because they do not have the actual, peer-reviewed, cold hard data.

Meanwhile, my garden is looking great today!
Peace,
kmf



Visit Edible Iowa River Valley"In the long view, no nation is healthier that its children, or more prosperous than its farmers." -President Harry Truman, at the signing of the School Lunch Act, 1946
Join Slow Food HereJoin Gather.com here
Peace,
kmf



Visit Edible Iowa River Valley"In the long view, no nation is healthier that its children, or more prosperous than its farmers." -President Harry Truman, at the signing of the School Lunch Act, 1946
Join Slow Food HereJoin Gather.com here
post #11 of 62
Since we've moved to our new village I've been growing a vegetable garden too. I've had some problems this year, like mealy bugs chewing through the stems of my cucumbers and squash plants and there seems to be a perpetual lower leaf fungus that attacks my tomatoes-Waaaah! What to do?
But the lettuces, greens, beans, and sugar snaps have all been great.
One other thing I try to do is dry our laundry on a clothes line-saves a lot of energy.
It's frustrating wanting and trying to do the right thing for our planet and society knowing my contribution makes so little impact in the bigger picture. So many more people could not care less. Hybrid snobs (plenty around here) touting their "superior" cars while driving to and from their McMansions really get my goat. I'd have bought a hybrid if any had the cargo room I need for hauling equipment to location shoots and if they were any good in the ice and snow (I settled on a Volvo AWD wagon. Volvo is no slouch in the efficiency and emissions arena, fortunately.)
I did find that Gore's suggestions at the end of the movie re: what individuals can do to help with the problem are simple enough for most folks to follow. Turn off lights when not in the room. Wear extra clothing in the winter. Drive the speed limit. Recycle. Grow a garden. Buy as many local foods as you can.
There were several others, but I forgot them.
Try to add a few more to the list if you remember any so to remind us all (and maybe enlist BigHead too).

www.foodandphoto.com

Liquored up and laquered down,
She's got the biggest hair in town!

www.foodandphoto.com

Liquored up and laquered down,
She's got the biggest hair in town!

post #12 of 62
Thread Starter 
First, a quick digression

foto - the bugs are probably squash bugs, and there is no organic way to stop them except go out every morning, turn every leaf and crush each one.

If you're OK with occasional chemical use for emergencies like this one, then there are plenty of insecticides that will do the trick.

Your tomato fungus actually comes from rain splashing up the microbes from the soil. Layer a few sheets of newspaper around each plant, and clip away the lower leaves.

Now back to the topic at hand:

A quick google search turned up lots of ideas, but here's one from an interesting site called eHow:
Peace,
kmf



Visit Edible Iowa River Valley"In the long view, no nation is healthier that its children, or more prosperous than its farmers." -President Harry Truman, at the signing of the School Lunch Act, 1946
Join Slow Food HereJoin Gather.com here
Peace,
kmf



Visit Edible Iowa River Valley"In the long view, no nation is healthier that its children, or more prosperous than its farmers." -President Harry Truman, at the signing of the School Lunch Act, 1946
Join Slow Food HereJoin Gather.com here
post #13 of 62
Thread Starter 
Oh, and about the hybrid. I drive a prius, it has LOTS of payload space (I can cater with it) and handles Iowa winters just fine.

45 mpg by the way.
Peace,
kmf



Visit Edible Iowa River Valley"In the long view, no nation is healthier that its children, or more prosperous than its farmers." -President Harry Truman, at the signing of the School Lunch Act, 1946
Join Slow Food HereJoin Gather.com here
Peace,
kmf



Visit Edible Iowa River Valley"In the long view, no nation is healthier that its children, or more prosperous than its farmers." -President Harry Truman, at the signing of the School Lunch Act, 1946
Join Slow Food HereJoin Gather.com here
post #14 of 62
In so far as gardening and food sustainability I have posted this guys name and website before, but in the spirit of this thread and the gardening sidetrip you may want to take a look at his website and check out his book(s) also available at your local library usually.
http://www.johnjeavons.info/
We may not change the world ourselves but I guess it's true that every little bit helps. And even if you lean a little to the right and see the world in terms of "tree huggers" and "conservatives". There is still little things you can do that will help. After all I think it's inevitible in the course of time and nature that someday the earth won't be around, and not necessarily because of anything we do, or don't do. But why hasten it by being selfish. When we're gone we will still be leaving our kids, and their kids etc.
At least we get a discussion going and even people that don't agree with parts of the discussion should be able to see the situation developing and take something good away from it. So nice post Devotay for bringing it up.
My latest musical venture!
http://myspace.com/nikandtheniceguys
 
Also
http://www.myspace.com/popshowband "I'm at the age when food has taken the place of sex in my life. In fact I've just had a mirror put over my kitchen table." Rodney Dangerfield RIP
My latest musical venture!
http://myspace.com/nikandtheniceguys
 
Also
http://www.myspace.com/popshowband "I'm at the age when food has taken the place of sex in my life. In fact I've just had a mirror put over my kitchen table." Rodney Dangerfield RIP
post #15 of 62
Here's a good way to recycle:

www.freecycle.org

I've used my local freecycle list to great success. Gave away a computer, bicycle, lamps, old but useable tires, etc. All of which would have ended up in a landfill.

I'd love to further downsize, we're a one car family and bike commute to and from the grocery store. But, as one of the vices of living in the suburbs, we can't regularly ride our bikes for other things. Dr. appointments, ethnic grocery stores, honest restaurants, are all out of reach by bicycle.
post #16 of 62
Unfortunantly the condition as described is a real common ailment amongst those who tout the wisdom, virtue and psudoscience of Algore:)

bigwheel
post #17 of 62
Well the boy is similar to his old daddy..which is way too left leaning for me to get excited. Now will say I admire his stance on certain issues and would surely be forced to class him as the lesser of the evils when compared to the alternatives..i.e. Algore or the Heinze Kerry ketchup jiggolo fella.

bigwheel
post #18 of 62
Dang you got me thinking here. Dont trees produce that nasty old Co2 stuff when the sun goes down? If so think I am fixing to fire up the chainsaw and start cutting down trees to try and help Algore save the planet. Kindly let me know about this purty quick. Thanks.

bigwheel
post #19 of 62
Thread Starter 
First of all, everybody keep your religion (or lack thereof) to yourselves, where it belongs.

Secondly, I don't know where you get off calling the peer-reviewed scientific data of hundreds, even thousands of well educated researchers "pseudoscience"

So does this make you the kind of knee-jerk reactionary right-wingnut that automatically assumes that any thought or utterance that is in disagreement with your deeply held beliefs must be dismissed out of hand? Or are you, as I had hoped, the type of open-minded conservative who is willing to consider that others ideas just might have the force of scientific fact behind them?

Yeah, no. Trees produce oxygen, they absorb CO2. Course, if you'd paid attention in biology class, you'd know that (oops! that'd be science! can listen to that!)
Peace,
kmf



Visit Edible Iowa River Valley"In the long view, no nation is healthier that its children, or more prosperous than its farmers." -President Harry Truman, at the signing of the School Lunch Act, 1946
Join Slow Food HereJoin Gather.com here
Peace,
kmf



Visit Edible Iowa River Valley"In the long view, no nation is healthier that its children, or more prosperous than its farmers." -President Harry Truman, at the signing of the School Lunch Act, 1946
Join Slow Food HereJoin Gather.com here
post #20 of 62
Let me guess..all this hard science is only available from left wing tree huggers like Algore perhaps?

bigwheel
post #21 of 62
Thread Starter 
No. Unless you call climatologists at NASA and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory "tree huggers." Not to mention every physics and chemistry professor at MIT.

There's ideology, and then there's science.
Peace,
kmf



Visit Edible Iowa River Valley"In the long view, no nation is healthier that its children, or more prosperous than its farmers." -President Harry Truman, at the signing of the School Lunch Act, 1946
Join Slow Food HereJoin Gather.com here
Peace,
kmf



Visit Edible Iowa River Valley"In the long view, no nation is healthier that its children, or more prosperous than its farmers." -President Harry Truman, at the signing of the School Lunch Act, 1946
Join Slow Food HereJoin Gather.com here
post #22 of 62
BW this is where the problems start, essentially it's like playground name calling. You have latched onto something like a pitbull and won't let go, and no matter what anyone says you will resort to the al gore comments. I went back to the beginning of the thread to see if someone took a swipe at you to start this, and no one did. You took it upon yourself to take it to a childish level and this is why no one can discuss religion and politics because it ends up like this. This discussion has gone beyond Al and it's really not so much of a political hot potato as it is a humanistic issue. You have kids I assume? If not I am sure you have relations that do. If so you really need to get off the "rightist style" bandwagon and join in a discussion that promotes our future and that of our families. I'm not saying you have to agree with everything or change your beliefs, but drop the gloves and listen to what is at stake and at least see if in your own backyard you can help in someway. Afterall you won't be here forever, I won't be, Al won't be and even Dubya won't be here, but someone will have to clean up after you, me, etc. It may even end up being your family that pays the price if we don't at least try to protect the earth and air that gives us life.
My latest musical venture!
http://myspace.com/nikandtheniceguys
 
Also
http://www.myspace.com/popshowband "I'm at the age when food has taken the place of sex in my life. In fact I've just had a mirror put over my kitchen table." Rodney Dangerfield RIP
My latest musical venture!
http://myspace.com/nikandtheniceguys
 
Also
http://www.myspace.com/popshowband "I'm at the age when food has taken the place of sex in my life. In fact I've just had a mirror put over my kitchen table." Rodney Dangerfield RIP
post #23 of 62
Bravo Chrose!

www.foodandphoto.com

Liquored up and laquered down,
She's got the biggest hair in town!

www.foodandphoto.com

Liquored up and laquered down,
She's got the biggest hair in town!

post #24 of 62
Thread Starter 
Congratulations, BigWheel, you are now the first person on ChefTalk I've ever had to put on my "ignore" list.

I recommend others do the same.

Anyone who would like to continue the sane portion of this conversation - I'm all ears.
Peace,
kmf



Visit Edible Iowa River Valley"In the long view, no nation is healthier that its children, or more prosperous than its farmers." -President Harry Truman, at the signing of the School Lunch Act, 1946
Join Slow Food HereJoin Gather.com here
Peace,
kmf



Visit Edible Iowa River Valley"In the long view, no nation is healthier that its children, or more prosperous than its farmers." -President Harry Truman, at the signing of the School Lunch Act, 1946
Join Slow Food HereJoin Gather.com here
post #25 of 62
i've got to say ever since i invested in my pellet stove i've been a lot warmer in my house and the ash gets put right into the garden. i figure if every one of us can try to recyle and re-use there might be a world left for my grandchildren. i don't understand how people are so blind to all the damage we humans have done to the earth.
just doing my small part to try and make it better.
kathee
post #26 of 62
Thread Starter 
Hi Kat.

Tell me more about the stove. How much does it cost, where do you get the fuel? what's the fuel cost? Was it easy to install?

And what sort of emissions are there? Are you robbing Peter to pay Paul, or does it burn cleanly?
Peace,
kmf



Visit Edible Iowa River Valley"In the long view, no nation is healthier that its children, or more prosperous than its farmers." -President Harry Truman, at the signing of the School Lunch Act, 1946
Join Slow Food HereJoin Gather.com here
Peace,
kmf



Visit Edible Iowa River Valley"In the long view, no nation is healthier that its children, or more prosperous than its farmers." -President Harry Truman, at the signing of the School Lunch Act, 1946
Join Slow Food HereJoin Gather.com here
post #27 of 62
BW I really like reading your posts man but sometimes you tend to be a little overbearing. You gotta know when to back out and this is one you should have backed out of sometime ago. Now granted I see where you are coming from being in Texas and its the home state of now President Bush but I don't think Devotay intended this to turn into a political wrangling of any sort. Points are made here and points are taken here and we let it go at that. Chill BW, chill.

Rgds Rook...
post #28 of 62

ambivilant...

...but interested. Whether or not global warming is the bugiman breathing down our necks is almost irrelevant. I tend to be very conservative. However, some truly terrible things are happening in this world and should stop. The rape of exotic timbers to line our boardrooms, to our own inertia. do not forget people like Gene Straton Porter, who wrote "Girl of the Limberlost" (Sp) early in the 20th century. She was a conservationist of great stature. An American and I think her books are back in print again.

So having sent the Bugi pirate back to Indonesia, from whence he came, I would vote to grow our own gardens anyway, drive an easy to park car, save petrol money, walk if possible, switch out lights etc etc. It sounds very simplistic, and doubtless is, but if we were cutting our own caulis from our own gardens we would be a jolly sight happier. Not to mention healthier. Which is very relevant because we are told the most affluent nations, are also the unhappiest. A sortee into the societal sociology shows that very quickly.
post #29 of 62
As I said earlier I am studying to take a test for LEEDS Certification at work from the USGBC. In some ways I found there was a certain amount of touchy, feely "tree huggin" kind of attitude, exactly the kind that gets BW's dander up. It was a little off putting, kind of a hippiesh PETA attitude. But I also found when you get right down to it, most if not all of it makes sense, and there appears to be a lot we can do. In the building industry they are working to get as many new and reused buildings to undergo this certification. Some of it is a little pricier now that it's new, but over time the costs will go down as it becomes more commonplace. It turns out too that there are a lot of "Watchdog commities" that we don't know about. One I learned was the FSC http://www.fsc.org/en/ so it's nice to know there are groups out there looking out. Other ways I have found are to use rain barrels to collect rain to use for gardening to cut back on public water usage and over time we will be able to refit our homes with "graywater" systems to also cut back water usage. So there are apparently a whole lot of things going on out there, that are actually pretty cool. Read up. You don't have to hug the trees, just save a couple:)
My latest musical venture!
http://myspace.com/nikandtheniceguys
 
Also
http://www.myspace.com/popshowband "I'm at the age when food has taken the place of sex in my life. In fact I've just had a mirror put over my kitchen table." Rodney Dangerfield RIP
My latest musical venture!
http://myspace.com/nikandtheniceguys
 
Also
http://www.myspace.com/popshowband "I'm at the age when food has taken the place of sex in my life. In fact I've just had a mirror put over my kitchen table." Rodney Dangerfield RIP
post #30 of 62
You dont think trees and most other plant life emit Co2 when the lights go out? They even have a name for it..reverse photosynthesis. You betta drop your pal Big Al an email and let him know about this new discovery so he can put it into his next book. Kindly tell him I will only chain saw the trees when they is misbehaving the worst..which is after dark. Thanks.

bigwheel
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